Hilmer Motorport head into their second season in GP2 with an all-new driver line-up, along with a new look to their car after announcing a driver development partnership with the Sahara Force India F1 squad. (See separate story
Hilmer has tapped last year's GP3 championship runner-up Facu Regalia to race in the team's #12 car in 2014, and is the first driver to benefit from the F1 team's expanded driver development programme moving into GP2.
"It is incredible news for me to be a GP2 driver with Hilmer Motorsport and Sahara Force India's driver development programme," said Regalia. "I appreciate the belief Franz Hilmer showed in my performances last year and the opportunity to race with him in 2014.
"I am also very proud to be associated with Sahara Force India and will make the most of the opportunities it presents," he added. "The chance to drive a F1 car at the end of the season is also a huge motivation. My focus is to work as hard as I can to make sure we are fighting at the front of the field and getting the best results possible."
The 22-year-old from Buenos Aires in Argentina previously spent a year in the Auto GP World Series after honing his craft in Formula BMW in Europe and the Pacific, as well as seasons in the Italian Formula Three Championship, Formula 3 Euro Series and European F3 Open Championship
Regalia will be joined at Hilmer by Daniel Abt, who is heading into his second year in the feeder series following a frustrating rookie season at ART.
"I am determined to have a successful year with Hilmer Motorsport in the GP2 Series and I'm sure that we have the right package to achieve our ambitious goals," said the 21-year-old German, who by coincidence was also was also a GP3 championship runner-up in 2012 when he move into GP2.
"I am very happy about the association between Hilmer Motorsport and Sahara Force India F1 Team," he added. "Over the last few years, Sahara Force India has given young and talented drivers the opportunity to race in F1 so it's great to have their support this season."
Franz Hilmer, the team principal and managing director of Hilmer Motorsport, said that he was excited about the upcoming season with the new driver line-up, who will be racing in a new livery sporting the distinctive colours of Sahara Force India
"With Facu Regalia and Daniel Abt we have two very talented, young drivers with the potential to progress to F1," he said. "We will do our best to support them on their way to the pinnacle of motor racing."
Last year's Hilmer drivers included Conor Daly, Robin Frijns, Adrian Quaife-Hobbs, Pål Varhaug and Jon Lancaster.
Force India team principal Dr Vijay Mallya said that the new partnership with Hilmer in GP2 should result in "a holistic development programme to school drivers from grassroots karting to the higher echelons of professional motorsport."
Force India's line-up for the F1 world champion consists of two former GP2 drivers, Nico Hulkenberg and Sergio Perez, with Dani Juncadella lined up as the team's development and reserve driver.